Our Frugal Lifestyle

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Passionate about eco-frugality. I used to party hard, clubbing my way from pay-packet to pay-packet. Never getting ahead, just getting by. Then came our much wanted baby with no savings in the bank - only an old car. Changes were made to our lifestyle and we didn't turn back. In the past 6yrs we purchased a flat, found employment, lived below our means, built an emergency fund, purchased a reliable car and saw the financial benefits of our frugal lifestyle. Our only debt is our mortgage. Our aim is to manage our cash flow wisely, pay off our home quickly and eventually work for pleasure, not necessity. Join us on our journey, share insights, tips and tricks to help us and others to get ahead while having a good time.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Our Frugal Holiday In France

Our trip to France in December and January was an exciting adventure of reconnecting with family and friends. Dolly was thrilled to meet cousins as we don't have much family in Australia.
Cousin Love.
We kept things frugal as we stayed with family and friends and enjoyed their warm hospitality and FANTASTIC FOOD!!! Some places we stayed 1 or 2 nights and others more.
Lyon - The Rambling Expat's Aunt Cooking Rabbit.
Paris - My Cousin rushes home each lunchtime to cook and eat - making Goats Cheese Quiche.
Paris - My Godmother gave up her lovely mezzanine bedroom for us, with view on Sacre Coeur!
Lyon - The Rambling Expat's childhood friend cooked up a storm for us and gave internet time.
Lyon - Great Company (Family) and Great Food (Rabbit and Chest Nuts).
We tried to replenish people fridges if there was the possibility of time, accessibility and shops. Sorry to those we did not - come to Australia and we will return the favour :-)
Lyon - Tourism in the supermarket - The (seafood?) section - Frog Legs on the left.
Lyon - Enjoying part of the cheese selection in the Supermarket with my Brother (not) In Law.
Paris - I Discovered Lidl - So Inexpensive!!!! Bought pre-packed snails too! Yum.
Lyon - Gift for Host, Marie Antoinette is not the only one who Loves Patisserie.
If you don't have family and friends in France do look at Helpx and CouchSurfing. I highly recommend both for inexpensive accommodation, great local knowledge and a "community" way to travel. There are many other similar sites but these are the ones our household uses.
Reims - Stayed with our former CouchSurfing Guest, as they were back in France - Now friends for life.
We used public transport to get around; buses, metro, trains and trams and we learnt to ask about cheaper options. Counter staff are a wealth of information and know the good deals which may not be obvious or advertised. Asking saved us a lot of Euros as; different times, travelling with a child or buying 10 tickets, all meant special rates and discounts.
Paris - Public Transport Tickets; RER, Metro and Buses.

France - Easy Train Travel.
We didn't shop for much useless stuff but instead spent our money on experiences for Dolly which we also enjoyed.

My only purchase was a handbag which was 25 Euros after being reduced by 50% and it's already falling apart. I purchased 6 French children's books, 2 French DVDs for Dolly and 2 French CD's for myself. Other than that I had no interest in shopping which was different to my past life where I used to want to hit the shops in Paris and Lyons and shop till I dropped. I really wanted to browse some Op-Shops (Thrift Stores) and Flea Markets but never got the opportunity.

Come back soon as I will be posting shots of FOOD in France! And also some friends and family interiors. A interior designer friend in France has told me due to small spaces people must decorate not the square meter but the cubic meter. This was a light bulb moment for me.


  1. Hi, we have Lidl in the UK. It is a German outlet ( I think ) and it does sell a lot of European produce however it is quite well known here for the inexpensive fresh fruit & vegetables.

  2. I love Lidl, if you'd had popped over the channel, you could have couched surfed with us too, love froogs xxx

  3. Nothing like Lidl here in Darwin! I found food in france to be inexpensive - maybe our dollar was powerful and this gave the illusion of being wealthy :-)


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